Random things I saw today….


In the parking lot of a restaurant I saw –

The best damn car seat covers…





If these don’t stop your mother in law from asking you for a ride?

Nothing will.

At Goodwill I saw –




Technically no, Richard…. no one said sale.

It’s just thrifting.




But may I say…..eeewww.

Clearly there is no quality control in the thrift store business.

This was a sleeve of a blouse with hair covered velcro on the end.

Why did it have hair covered velcro on the end?



It’s Goodwill. How the hell should I know?

And finally I saw…




A full grown pregnant doe terrified of a chipmunk.

He was sitting on the edge of the stone wall, chipping… as chipmunks are wont to do.

And she wouldn’t come any closer.




I don’t speak chipmunk, but maybe….




He’d had a bad day.








Because I promised I would….



Love ’em or hate ’em, you have to admit they’re marvelously clever and acrobatic creatures. Entire industries are built on deterring them from raiding our bird feeders, but squirrels?

They train for it.



Personally, I enjoy their antics and figure anyone who works that hard deserves a few seeds and nuts.

So as promised, here are a few of my favorite shots over the years.

When we moved to our house in 2002 it was a wasteland of gardenless grass, so I stuck a quick pole in the ground with a feeder.




It didn’t take long for a squirrel to find it.




Reaching it was a little harder.




But eventually he got there.




Although he had a hard time accessing the seed…




It didn’t beat him.




And he happily ate hanging upside down.




Mind you, we have a large open backyard and the winds blow like downtown Chicago so a lot of the feeders actively swing.




Which is what this one was doing. Back and forth, back and forth, with a squirrel happily perched inside and enjoying the ride.




This one didn’t mind sharing the feeder with an orange.

He just used it as a cushion.




Here’s another upside down eater.


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Maybe he was raiding seed…maybe he was doing handstands.

Tough call.


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Either way, I’m in awe of the leg muscle it takes to hang like that.




This feeder posed a challenge at first.




And for a while all he could do was hug it.




But after a day or two?




Upside down munching.





Is there anything they can’t do?



Apparently not.


Just throwing this out there.


I rarely blog about anything religious or political.

I have friends on both sides of the aisle. Left and right, liberal and conservative, atheist and Christian. Thankfully I’m an adult who can agree to disagree without coming to blows.



I don’t engage in Twitter wars or Facebook diatribes.




Although truthfully, it’s been an eye opening experience to see how some of my oldest and dearest friends really feel.  Did I ever know them, know them?

Apparently not.

That being said, the recent attacks on women’s reproductive rights has me incensed enough to post this:





Okay, it’s a little in your face, but basically on point.

Sorry gentlemen, but if you could get pregnant? The world would have drive thru clinics on every corner.

Yes, I’m pro choice.

And I don’t want to start a 350 comment battle of hate on the issue of abortion. But my mother had an illegal back alley procedure in 1943. She was 20 years old, in love for the first time and very naive. The man she thought would marry her…. paid for her to take of it instead. The “doctor” used dirty instruments. She hemorrhaged, almost bled out and had to be rushed to the hospital with a raging infection. Years later, when she married my father and tried to have children… she had 5 miscarriages because of that awful experience. I was her 6th and final pregnancy. Her late in life miracle child.

If the idea of abortion is abhorrent to you? I get it.

Don’t have one. No one’s forcing you..

But the current climate of gender inequality is trying to force women back into those horrible dark rooms…. and that makes me sick.


That’s off my chest.

Now back to your regularly scheduled nonsense.


Squirrel acrobatics.




If there’s any better smell….


I don’t know what it is.




Freshly cut lilacs.



Okay, I totally want a pair of crab scissors now.




These two huge lilac bushes live on the side of our house.




(That’s my vase on the ground to the right of them for scale.)

When we moved here 17 years ago there wasn’t much in the way of landscaping , but thankfully there were lilacs.




One white…




One dark purple.

Naturally, my favorite was always the paler shade…. but beggars can’t be choosers.

My girlfriend gave me a pale one 3 years ago, but it’s got a long way to go to catch up to it’s siblings.



Come on little fella, you can do it.




Of course, from the pace of growth…

I’ll probably be dead before it blooms.



Good thing the white one is prolific.






Because he can’t stand it when I’m right.


He really can’t.

Remember when I blogged about the husband’s new toy not fitting in our old barn/shed?

It looked something like this:




I was right…

And apparently that didn’t sit well with the other half so he did a little remodeling.




This is our old shed/barn that needs to be torn down.




Years ago, it housed a horse.





It’s a pile of rotted wood.

How rotted?




Really rotted.

It’s an eyesore that drives me nuts every single day.

The fact that it’s still standing defies all logic.




I’ve come to the conclusion that it hates me…

And refuses to die just because it can.



But back to the tractor.

The husband figured if he could straighten out a door…




He could get it inside.




Which he did, but not far enough inside due to that pesky center pole.

You know the one…

It holds up the rotted roof?






We don’t need that.



Mission accomplished.




He proved me wrong… and got the tractor in the shed.

How long there will be a roof over it is anyone’s guess.




Remember the dandelion eating woodchuck I posted about a while back?

We’ve discovered she lives under our barn.

And yes, she’s a she because…





She has babies!

Baby chuckers… can I get an awwwww?





They’re just too cute.

Four in total …but I rarely see them together long enough to get a photograph.

Three is the most I’ve captured so far.








Here’s one trying to hide under my iron garden bird.




Well, not quite.

More like…




This little one seems to like our back deck.




You can hear him scurrying for cover under the grill… then catch him checking to see if the coast is clear.




This looked like trouble…






But after a few nibbles, he decided he didn’t like geraniums…which was good news for me.




I hate to tell you, but this probably won’t be the last of the baby chucker pics.

You’ve been warned.


Say it isn’t so Apple….


I just heard Apple is killing iTunes and I’m not happy.



iTunes and I have spent many happy years together gathering a vast library of music. I’ve happily downloaded the music of my youth, my adolescence, my single years, my married years and my rapidly approaching decrepitude.

I’m invested damn it!

The iPod and I are tight.



I have the giant one. It holds 40,000 songs and though I haven’t filled it?

I wanted to.

And then I read Apple… in all their infinite  F.U. Tim Cook, you’re no Steve Jobs  wisdom, are breaking iTunes up into different apps and focusing on streaming.




I don’t want to stream. I want my songs.

My weirdo… no one has ever heard of the band… songs.

The songs I oh so carefully and painfully slowly converted from my 33 1/3 album collection….

(For millennial readers?  33 1/3rd’s are those shiny black discs people bend into bowls and sell at your local flea markets.)

… and the obscure songs I could always find and download from the iTunes store.

Pousette Dart Band’s Yaicha?



Yeah, I’ve got that.

Moon Martin’s Bootleg Woman?



Yup. Got that too.

iTunes had everything!




Apple says that our libraries will be safe… if you bought it you can keep it. But will the store be there for future downloads?



Researching the demise, I found this:




Okay, I run iTunes on Windows…. so I can still breathe.

For now.

But if you need me in the next few weeks? Tough.

I’ll be busy downloading scores of music while I still can.

You know, quality stuff.

Like Ultimate Spinach… and The Flying Burrito Brothers.